Date of Completion

Spring 5-1-2015

Thesis Advisor(s)

Mark Healey

Honors Major



Latin American History | United States History


Although the United States had involved itself in programs of land reform in Korea, Japan, and Western Europe in the mid-20th century, prior to the establishment of the Alliance for Progress, there was little discussion of encouraging such programs in Latin America. The purpose of this thesis is to examine the attitudes towards land reform in Colombia prior to the signing of Colombian Law 135. By examining documents from the Kennedy administration, this thesis proves the United States exerted its influence on Latin American nations in the early 1960’s to promote the enacting of national agrarian reform projects. Furthermore, Colombian arguments are then analyzed to show where this American pressure fit in to the general debate surrounding such a reform program. Ultimately this thesis establishes the different voices involved in the creation of Colombian Law 135 and how they fit in to the general relationship between the United States, the Alliance for Progress and Latin America.